“Tiger King” shocks viewers, becomes a “must-watch”


Photographer: Photo pulled from slash film.com

The show gained a wide audience after the plot shocked viewers.

Catalina Forister, Staff Reporter

In the midst of a pandemic, people around the world are finding solace in the now revolutionary true crime documentary that is “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.” The documentary stars Oklahoma zookeeper Joe Exotic, and shows just how twisted the seemingly simple world of small town zoo owners can become. 

The series is composed of seven episodes that center around the rivalry between ‘Tiger King” Joe Exotic, and his rival, animal rights activist Carole Baskin, founder of Big Cat Animal Rescue. The documentary also focuses on the complications that come with owning large cats, and manages to sweep viewers into a world of murder trails, cults, drug use and polygamy along the way. 

“Tiger King” is the opposite of what anyone was expecting, but somehow just what everyone needed. What is so unusual about the series is that the plot’s escalation just never stops, which is especially unusual for a documentary. For example, in a textbook animal documentary, one usually expects an educational, slow moving story with little conflict and a lot of beautiful animals tied in. 

Instead, viewers were presented with a story that was centered not around the tigers, but around the people in and out of the animal’s cages. Joe Exotic wrestles with keeping his zoo from the hands of Carole Baskin as her influence in the animal world grows, and as the series progresses it steers itself further and further away from the animals themselves, and becomes more focused on the steady mental decline of Joe Exotic as his world slips out from underneath him. 

“Tiger King” started as a mere amateur project, and has now been coined as the most viewed documentary in human history. The series is twisted, disturbing and anything but wholesome, but the story of Joe Exotic is one that everyone should experience.